CONCERNED RESIDENTS OF RIDGEWOOD ENDORSES KILLION, SHINOZUKA AND ARONSOHN FOR VILLAGE COUNCIL
April 23, 2012, Ridgewood, NJ – Concerned Residents of Ridgewood (CRR) has endorsed Keith Killion, Jane Shinozuka and Paul Aronsohn for Ridgewood Village Council, to fill the three open seats to be decided on May 8th 2012.
“Residents must know that the push to prevent the massive expansion of Valley Hospital is not finished. The outgoing Council unanimously rejected the Ordinance that would have permitted the ‘Renewal’ in its current form, but the makeup of the Village Council could materially change with this election. As long as the Planning Board’s Master Plan Amendment for the H-Zone, from June 2010, remains on the books, a new Council could approve ‘Renewal’ without modification.” stated Pete McKenna, president of CRR , the grassroots organization that has opposed this massive expansion of Valley Hospital at their Ridgewood location.
“We can’t overstate the importance of electing candidates to this Council that can be relied upon to approach this situation rationally and with the best interests of the resident taxpayers at the forefront. Valley’s ‘Renewal’ is simply too much building for that fifteen acre site, in that location, and since the Ordinance’s rejection last fall, there has been no modification of that plan offered by Valley. Voters must go to the polls on May 8th, and vote for candidates Killion, Shinozuka and Aronsohn, who are the only candidates to consistently, publicly say that ‘Renewal’, as proposed and approved by the Planning Board, was wrong for Ridgewood”, Mr. McKemma added.
“To ensure that an expansion the size of Paramus Park Mall (not counting the proposed parking deck) does not get built on this site, it is as critical as ever that we elect candidates who will firmly oppose such a permanent change to our Village. As long as the 2010 Master Plan Amendment for the H-Zone remains in place, a Council biased towards advancing Valley’s ambitions could resurrect ‘Renewal’, and Valley is counting on that. It is critical that everyone that feels the needs of the residents are at least as important as the ambitions of Valley, needs to get out the vote, and vote in a council that will help put this matter behind us once and for all,” commented Mr. McKenna.
CRR has consistently stated it understands Valley’s need to modernize and even modestly expand its building. Having said that, our basic research indicates Valley could achieve all of its stated objectives in a building 400,000 square feet smaller than ‘Renewal’. Ridgewood voters have elected every candidate that has been endorsed by CRR, but nothing would please us more than to be irrelevant in future elections. It is our sincere hope that this is the last Village election where Valley Hospital’s business desires have to be considered by Ridgewood voters,” he added.
“Keith Killion established fair stewardship over the H-Zone ordinance hearings, which allowed the vastly negative impacts of ‘Renewal’ to finally come to light. This contribution during Mayor Killion’s current tenure is a vital legacy of the current Council”, according to McKenna.
Jane Shinozuka, while not an incumbent, has publicly stated her opposition to a large expansion that would alter the residential character of the Village, and she has valuable experience as a member of the current Planning Board in addition to her other volunteer positions for the Village.
Paul Aronsohn continually asked pointed and critical questions of the experts during Council’s recent hearings and was part of the unanimous vote to reject the H-Zone ordinance that would have irreversibly damaged our village.
Mr. McKenna stated that CRR invited all six Village Council candidates to meet individually with a committee of the organization. The goal was to discuss issues ranging from the central business district, Village spending and personnel, Village services, land-use and development, pedestrian safety, Graydon Pool and the existing Master Plan Amendment that would allow ‘Renewal’. “To those who think we are one-issue people, ask the candidates how well prepared we were on all of these topics,” Mr. McKenna said.
“While our primary concern as CRR is the balancing of resident needs against Valley’s desires, we are Ridgewood taxpayers and residents too and would only endorse candidates we feel will serve Ridgewood well for years to come. If you care about these issues, we urge your continued support by going to the polls and voting for candidates Killion, Shinozuka and Aronsohn in two weeks.”